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-and ventured to London, depending chiefly on the deep destitution of the working classes in the manufacpromises of help given me by a literary baronet who turing districts, until I became a resident therein. I then represented Lincoln, and in whose interest I had then began to observe the striking contrast between sedulously laboured for some years. For seven anx- those districts and the agricultural parts of England. ious wecks that baronet kept me in cruel suspense, In happy Lincolnshire, --for I may call it so comparapretending that he had placed a manuscript romance tively, — the strongest attachment subsisted between which, at his own request I had entrusted to him,-in farmer and peasant-between landlord and tenant. the hands of his own publisher. I afterwards learned No large fortures could be there made, in the brief that this was a wholesale falsehood ; and he had only space of five or six years. In Leicester, and simibeen mocking me when he returned that manuscript, lar localities, the bitterest feeling of hostility subsists complimenting me on its merits, but affecting to regret between manufacturer and workman: the 'workman that his publisher had too many things on hand to un- is ground to the earth by successive docks," as dertake to bring it out.- For eleven months I subsisted, they are called, of his paltry wages, by being almost by casualty, in London. My library, which was thrown out of work, and by various kinds of ill treata choice one, amounting to 500 volumes, I sold, volume ment, ---whilst his masters, amidst all their complaints by volume, for bread. Sometimes I obtained a little about the Corn Laws, build large factories and rear tall employ on the magazines—but when I had earned five chimneys; the workman toils in rags and starves, while pounds, I usually received no more than one. Mr. Lum- the master rolls in luxury and comfort. It was my actual ley, the bookseller of Chancery-lane, was one of the experience of the truth of this distress which kindled kindest friends I found in town: he employed me on in me the resolution to espouse openly, manfully, and various occasions, especially in the pleasing, though la-decidedly, the cause of the suffering and oppressed borious work, of copying at the British Museum library. operatives. A poor framework-knitter on whose veraAt length, when I was on the point of being reduced to city I could repose my life, had suffered the deepest extreme difficulty, having actually pawned my cloak, privation for weeks, but suffered silently. At length, and several other articles, I received a letter offering me when every article which could be so disposed of, had the editorship of the Greenwich Gazette or Kentish Ver- been taken to the pawn shop, himself, his young wife cury. I remained on that paper at a salary of £3 per and infant reached the verge of starvation. Unable week, until the prospect of retrieving it from ruin longer to conceal his extremity he laid a note upon my was gone. It has since become extinct. One fortnight desk, at eleven o'clock one night, and ran out of my after I had given notice to leave that situation, -by one shop: That note depicted his destitution, and informed of those sudden and unlooked-for incidents which I me that on the previous morning when lie awoke with have so often experienced in life as to impel me to the his young wife lying by his side, her first language, acbelief that a High and Ever Watchful power presides companied with heart-breaking sighs, was,over our ways,-I received an offer of a situation as re “Sunday come again, and nothing to eat!” while porter to the Leicestershire Mercury. There were se- the infant sought her breast, but there was no nutriveral reasons which operated strongly to induce me to ment for it; Nature's fountains were dried up by starvaaccept this offer. Leicester was my birth place, and tion! Another poor stockinger came one morning into although I had not seen it since infancy, I was romantic my house, and sitting himself down with a despairing enough to feel an ideal attachment to my native town. look which I shall never forget, exclaimed with an I also wished to be nearer my aged mother, whose in- oath,creasing infirmities warned me that she would soon “I wish they would hang me! I have lived on cold quit this stage of existence. These reasons, added to boiled potatoes, which were given me, for the last two the information that the paper I was invited to assist | days, and this morning I have eaten a raw potatoe from was ultra-democratic in its principles, induced me to sheer hunger! Give me a bit of bread and a cup of remove at once to Leicester. It will be two years come coffee, or I shall drop!” Such is the wretchedness, the November, since I settled there. In the month of Jan- abject suffering, and the unparalleled destitution to uary or February following my settlement, I was re- which the manufacturing operatives of my unhappy quested to attend and report a Chartist lecture. That country are reduced ! was the first lecture of the kind I had ever heard in my Can you wonder that such beings become Chartists? life. I had never, before, either seen or conversed with -or that a man of my nature became a Chartist while a Chartist, to my knowledge. Yet the prineiples I heard beholding such wretchedness ? enunciated in that lecture, by Mr. Mason, were my Of the causes of his arrest and trial Thomas Cooper own; they were the doctrines to which I had gives us some explanation in this defence. Having, as theoretically clung from boyhood. It was when leaving he states, been induced to enter heart and soul into the that lecture, too, that I first became acquainted with adoption of the People's Charter, as the means of rethe real suffering and destitution of the operatives in deeming them from the dreadful condition into which the manufacturing districis. It was about eleven they were fallen, he began to lecture to the masses o'clock when we were leaving the meeting; and as I on the necessity of adopting it. Amongst other places heard the crazy, rattling noise of the stocking frames in he was invited into the Staffordshire Potteries by the the garrets, while passing along the street, I said to Hanley Chartists, in August, 1842. He arrived at Hansome of the working men who had been at the meet- ley on Saturday the 13th of that month, and on the foling,
lowing day addressed three assemblies, at Fenton and "Bless me do these poor people frequently work so Longton, in the afternoon, and on the Crown Bank, at late?"
Hanley, at night. On this occasion, his text was “ Thou Aye, and gladly, when they can get it to do; was shalt do no murder.” That evening he was requested the reply.
to address the colliers on strike on the Monday morning. “And what may their earnings be?" was my next It appears that there was an extensive strike amongst question.
the colliers at that time, and Thomas Cooper, before his “On the average, about 7s.; and three goes for arrival in the Potteries liad addressed large assemblies frame-rent and other charges, so that they have about of them on strike at Wednesbury, Bilston, and Wolver4s. left."
hampton. At the meeting at Wednesbury, 30,000 col“Well," I replied ; 4s. per day is a decent wage.” liers had held up their hands in token of their determi“But we mean 4s. per week !" was the rejoinder. nation to keep the peace, a resolution to that effect hay
And on the closest enquiry I learnt that that was the ing been put. The result of this great meeting, howsad truth. In fact, I had been incredulous as to the ever, on the morning of Monday the 15th, on the Crown
Bank, at Hanley, was disastrous. The colliers, excited Staffordshire, Shropshire, and Herefordshire, into disor. to a high degree, broke out into riot on the following der.” On both occasions he was most keenly denounced night, attacked the house of an obnoxious clergyman, by Sir William Follett, the Solicitor-General. He was and finding wine in his cellar, drank, became furious, imprisoned altogether two years and eleven weeks. The and set on fire that and other houses, besides committing fruits of this imprisonment were neuralgia, rheumaother acts of violence.
tism, and other torments, occasioned by sleeping in a It was natural enough that the direct causation of this damp cell, added to the generally injurious influences of outbreak should be charged on Cooper, who was not imprisonment-and-the composition of “ The Purgaonly the chairman and orator of the meeting, but had tory of Suicides." addressed another large meeting at the George and Dra Reflecting on these latter facis, Mr. Cooper says with gon, on the evening of the same day. It would appear, a just pride in the preface to this remarkable work-—“I therefore, that ile outbreak did not occur immediately am poor, and have been plunged into more than two after the meeting on the Crown Bank, for Mr. Cooperstated hundred pounds' debt by the persecution of my eneon his trial that he had left Ilanley, and was on his way mies; but I have a consolation to know that my course to Manchester, unconscious of any tumult or mischief, was dictated by heart-felt zeal to relieve the sufferings when he was arrested. On his trial he proved an alibi, and oppressions of my fellow men. Sir William Follett and was acquitted of the charge of aiding and abetting was entombed with pomp, and a host of titled great in the riot and burning, but was remanded for trial on ones, of every shade of party, attended the laying of his two other indictments.
clay in the grave: and they purpose now to erect a moIn his defence on this occasion Thomas Cooper stated nument to his memory. Let them build it: the selfmost candidly what he did, and what he did not do. He educated shoemaker has also reared his; and despite its advised the people to strike all work till they got the imperfections, he has a calm confidence that, though Charter, and had again and again said. “Give me but the product of poverty, and suffering, and misery, it will one million of combined human wills, and the Charter outlast the posthumous stone block that may be erected shall in one day be law in England. He regarded him- to perpetuate the memory of the titled lawyer.” self as fully sanctioned in his advice of striking all Of Thomas Cooper's great work we shall quote our work, by the same advice having been given by the An- own opinion as given in the “Eclectic Review" on its ti-Corn Law League, and by the perfect right of every appearance. man to desist from labour for the attainment of a clear * We have here a genuine poem springing out of the legal right. But, on the other hand, he stoutly denied spirit of the times, and indeed, out of the heart and exhaving, either on that or any occasion in his whole life, perience of one who has wrestled with and suffered for incited the people to acts of violence. He referred to it. It is no other than a poem in ten books by a Charthis text on this very occasion--"Commit no murder.” ist, and who boldly sets liis name and his profession of He referred to the principles and practices of his whole Chartism on the title-page. It is that of a soul full of life. “I have always struggled,” he said, “to popular- thought, full of a burning zeal for liberty, and with a ize Chartism, by delivering familiar and elementary lec- temperament that must and will into action. The man tures on geography, geology, astronomy, history, phren- is all bone and sinew. IIc is one of those 'Terræ filii,' ology, and other popular subjects. I have endeavoured that England, inore than all the other nations of the to humanize, and civilize, and refine my own class. I earth put together, produces. One of the same class as never saw a pike, a gun, or a dagger, among the Leices. Burns, Ebenezer Elliot, Fox, the Norwich weaver-boy, ter Chartists. I never had an offensive weapon of the to say nothing of the Arkwrights, Smeatons, Brindleys, kind in my own possession during my whole life. I Chantrys, and the like, all rising out of the labour-class never let off a gun or a pistol in my life--nor do I know into the class of the thinkers and builders-up of English how to prepare either instrument for firing. It is by greatness. What is morcover singular, is, that he is moral means, and moral means alone, that I have ad another of the shoemaker crast, that craft wlich has provanced Chartism, until I had enrolled in one association duced such a host of men of talent-as Hans Sachs, in Leicester nearly three thousand individuals of both | George Fox, Drew, Gifford of the 'Quarterly,' and others. sexes.
“Till three-and-twenty" he says of himself, "he bent It was at Leicester that Thomas Cooper was residing over the last and the awl, struggling against weak health at that time. He was arrested there, and after the term and deprivation to acquire a knowledge of languages of his imprisonment he returned thither. As we have and his experience in after life was, at first limited to said, he was acquitted of the charge of incendiarism, the humble sphere of a schoolmaster, and never enbut in this he was more fortunate than William Ellis, larged beyond that of a laborious worker on a newsanother prisoner, arrested on the same charges, who paper." was transported for twenty-one years, although he pro Here, then, we have a striking instance of what are, tested in the most solemn manner that he was utterly and are likely to be, the fruits of general education and innocent, and was asleep in his bed at Burslem at the mechanics' libraries. Genius, freed from the heavy time of these outrages; and this statement was confirmed clogs and bonds of ignorance, thus docs and will more on oath by the aged woman with whom he and his wife and more develope itself in the labouring class, and not lodged at the time. It is astounding on what evidence only distinguish its possessors, but add ich treasures this poor man was condemned. A single man swore to the national literature. If it weic needful to conthat he saw a tall figure, with its back towards him, at vince us what a mass of information men of this desthe fires-that he then, for a few moments, saw the side cription will glean up, the present volume is a striking face, blackened, of this figure—and that he could swear evidence of it. The author tells us that he has spent that it was Ellis. There is now a universal feeling of years in mastering languages as the keys of that knowthe innocence of Ellis, and that he fell a victim to hav- ledge which he thirsted after; and the book abounds ing defeated the Lord-Lieutenant of the County at a pub- with proof of the success of his endeayours. He aplic meeting, by moving an amendment--yet he is to this pears to have revelled in history, ancient and modern. day suffering under this infamous sentence in a penal His acquirements in this department are quite amazing. colony.
It is probably this propensity to historic research which On his second trial Thomas Cooper made a most deter- has suggested to him his subject—"The Purgatory of mined, able, and memorable defence before Judge Ers- Suicides," certainly a singular one. As a subject, we kine. The struggle lasted ten days, and the Tory papers should say that it is rather curious than poetical; and made testy, complaints of "the insolent daring of a although he has contrived to invest it with features and Chartist, who had thrown the whole county business of circumstances of grandeur, yet we must at the same
time declare, that it is not the legitimate matter of the Of every age, and every mortal clime subject, but the introductions to each book, which are
They were ; and 'twas appalling their array the truly poetical portions of the volume. These are
To view, and think of nations choosing crime full of passion, and sentiment of the highest poetical
Of suicide,-hastening themselves to slay,
Rather than be their butcherous brethren's prey character. They are, as we have said too, full of the
Book viii. p. 271. spirit and tendencies of the present times. They are the actual produce of that spirit and tone of the great mass of the population of this country, which, under ate object. The introduction to the second book is an
But this awful spectacle has led us from our immedithe influence of circumstances, good and evil, and of invocation to the poetic spirits of England, and conintellectual advance, are so interesting and so impor- tains a splendid eulogium on Milton, one of the noblest tant for us to contemplate. They speak out to us what to be found in any author. The next is an apostrophe is passing in the depths of the popular mind. We do not to the sun, but turns into a pathetic and beautiful trihesitate to affirm, that these introductions stamp Tho-bute to the author's mother. The fourth book is opened mas Cooper as a genuine poet of a high order. They place with a very poetical address to the robin, but speedily him at once beside that man of iron, Ebenezer Elliott. turns as the poor man's thoughts, especially those of the They are fraught with fire, power, tenderness, and a
agricultural labourer now do, from the amenities of deep spirit of speculation on man and his prospects. nature to the crushing miseries of his condition. We will briefly enumerate these striking exordia. The first is a call on the enslaved to free themselves,
Alas, poor bird ! thy lay couched in terms such only as those who feel the wrongs And all its sweetness is forgot; their want and the oppressions of life are stimulated to use; and Of bread hath banished thoughts of Robin's chaunt: in pursuing the review of which, the poet is tempted The children plenty know no more ; and Love to ask himself, “Is life worth having?” This is the And Gentleness have fled from hunger's haunt:natural prelude to the great theme of his volume; and Fled is all worship for fair things that rove he soon finds himself voyaging througlı strange scenes,
Among fair flowers-worship in young hearts sweetly wove. in company with a host of suicides. Like John Bunyan, he repeats the dream at will, and thus enters
Fair Nature charms not; fellowship of song into the society of all the celebrated suicides of
And beauty, -germs from which grow, for the good
Reverence, and for the frail--though wrong-
Pity and tenderness;-all these the rude monstrations, that we become fully sensible of what
Chill breath of Want hath stified in the bud; a mighty host the suicidal portion of our race con And beggar quarrels for their scanty crust sists, and what a startling number of great names it in Now fill the bosoms of the lean, dwarfed brood, cludes. From the earliest age to the present, and in The peasant-father-sprung from sires robustevery country of the globe, men, and some, too, of high Beholds at home, and wishes he were laid in dust! genius, fortune, and powers, have laid violent hands on themselves. Sardanapalus, Saul, Zimri, Achitophel,
Ah! darling Robin,-thou wilt soon behold Eleazer Maccabæus, Ajax, Lycurgus, Charondas, The
No homes for poor men on old England's shore :mistocles, Zeno, Demosthenes, Cleombrotus, Appius Claud
No homes but the vile gaol, or viler fold
Rcared by new rule to herd the “ surplus poor."--p. 131. ius, Marc Anthony, Nero, Otho, Maximian, Mithridates, Lucretius, Brutus, Pompey, Lucan, Cato, Curtius, Caius Gracchus, Juba, Hannibal, Apicius, Sophonius Tigelli- what is the night to which the mind of the poor is ir,
Book the fifth opens with an apostrophe to night, and nus, Petronius Arbiter, Atticus the friend of Cicero, resistibly turned ? It is not that of the fair moon, and Vibius Virius, with Sappho, Dido, Porcia, Arria, the the deep blue vault of heaven brilliant with stars, but wife of Asdrubal the Carthaginian, and numbers of other the night of short rest from the wheel and the ill-paid women. These names, taken without regard to order
loom. of time, and merely as they present themselves to the memory, are but a mere indication of the thousands in
Darkness! thy sceptre still maintain,-for thou ancient times who fled from life by their own hand.
Some scanty sleep to England's slaves dost bring; The Greek and Roman annals abound with distin
Leicester's starved stockingers their misery now guished suicides. In every succeeding period, down to Forget; and Manchester's pale tenderling, our own day, spite of the grand iruths and awful The famished factory-child,-its suffering warnings promulgated in Christianity, the case is the A while exchangeth for a pleasant dream! same. Pontalba, Villeneuve, Condorcet, Roland, Mar Dream on poor infant wretch ! mammon may wring shal Berthier, Pétion, Chatterton, Castlereagh, Romilly,
From out thy tender heart, at the first gleam Whitbread, etc. These have their numbers swelled to
Of light, the life-drop, and exhaust its feeble strcam! vast hosts by beingWith sages blended,
Book the sixth begins with an execution, and calls Uncrowned, unsceptered, all their haught looks ended,
forth the anathemas of the poet of the poor on the state With bards, and workers out of human weal,
of the criminal laws, and on capital punishment. LonAnd patriots who in lofty deed transcended
don, with its splendour and its misery, its mammon Their fellows. Ghosts of erring zenl
worshippers and its strange regions of wretchedness and For faiths fantastic, creeds incomprehensible,
guilt, opens with a powerful but lurid picture the seventh.
The commencement of the eighth book is a grand hymn And cruel idol-worship, whom I saw
to the progress of knowledge, religious information, Climbing the mount of vanity,--the wild
and to the glory of the great men who have been the Lone dweller in the cave, whose rage with awe
devoted labourers of love and human happiness. This I witness'd ’mong his snakes--the poet-child With his lamenting harp, who wept, exiled
one portion is a superb and beautiful outpouring of a To forest solitude,—the tuneful choir
poetry worthy of the highest name in the art, making Of bards who walked the grore the band who toiled
us almost unjust to its real author by causing us to For aye, to kindle the fierce fatal fire
forget that he is a poor and self-taught man, the son of of soul wherewith France lit the devastating pyre
a poor woman who
Of Liberty,-a moiety of the ghosts
Book x. p. 327.
toiled to win her child a crust And fainting, still toiled on.
Book the ninth begins with an address to woman, of
equal beauty, and in its first stanzas presents another How it hath come to pass, that toil must pine wringing reality, not uncommon in the life of the poor. While sloth doth revel ;-how the game of blood
JIath served their tyrants ; how the scheme malign 'Tis woman's voice! woman in wailful grief,
of priests hath crushed them; and resolve doth bud, Joined by her babe's scarce conscious sympathy.
To band-and to bring back the primal brotherhood. Thy wife hath come to take her farewell brief,
What though awhile the braggart-tongued poltroon, Gaunt felon ! Brief and bitter must it be
False demagogue, or hireling base, impede For thy babe's mother, since the wide salt sea
The union they affect to aid ? Right soon Must roll, for life, its deep, dark gulph between
Deep thought to such “conspiracy” shall lead, Thee, convict, and that form of agony !
As will result in a successful deed Poor wretched thing! well may she wail, I ween,
Not forceful, but fraternal : for the past And wring her hands, and wish that she had nerer been !
Hath warned the Million that they must succeed
By will, and not by war. Yet to hold fast “Let me have one last kiss of my poor babe !"
Men's rage when they are starving--'tis a struggle vast! He saith, and clingeth to the grate. Oh! how The turnkey's answer will his bosom stab!
A struggle that were rain unless the Book “Away! we open not the bars !" and lo!
Had kindled light within the toiler’s soul, They push him rudely back! he may not know
And taught him though 'tis difficult to brook What baleful bliss it is to clasp a child
Contempt and hunger,-yet he must controul Or wife, ere one must yield them to life's woc.
Revenge, or it will leave him more in thrall. Oh! little had that kiss his grief beguiled,
The pike,—the brand, -- the blaze, -his lesson saith, But rather, filled his soul with after throes more wild.
Would leave Old England as they have left Gaul
Bondaged to sceptred cunning.. Thus their wrath She fainteth! yet awakes to moan and weep!
The Million quell, but look for right with firmest faith. How little didst thou think that smiling morn Thou didst, so early and so eager, peep Into thy mirror, and thy breast adorn
Thomas Cooper left Stafford Gaol on the 4th of May, With virgin-rose, so soon the sorrow-thorn Would there have pierced, and thou, in two short years,
1845, when he was just turned 40 years of age, being Would see thy husband in that dress of scorn,
born on the 20th of March, 1805, and consequently at the And thou, a widowed bride, a thing of tears,
present time turned 43. He came to London with his From that stern grate, forlorn, to meet the world's rude jeers! manuscripts, as described in the preface to the “ Purga
tory,” but was unable to get out his poem till the Sep
tember following. Its immediate success was greatly The tenth and last book opens with an invocation to promoted by a generous review in the “Britannia,” a Conliberty, in which, after a scarifying appeal to Lord servative newspaper, and supposed to be written by Dr. Brougham, as the author of the New Poor Law Act, by Croly. The “ Eclectic” and others immediately followthe apt epithet of “Harlequin Demosthenes,” he break's ed, and the merit of the poem, once made known, se.
In two months after out into a jubilant assurance of the triumph of freedom. cured its own acknowledgment. This we must take as our last quotation because it de- this appeared, a prose work, called "Wise Saws and monstrates the operation of that salutary change of Modern Instances, consisting chiefly of stories of counopinion amongst the Chartists, which has led them to try life, and giving many startling insights into the real abandon the fatal dream of physical force, and to rely, condition of the working classes of this country: In like enlightened men, on the omnipotence of moral January 1846, he also published a poem entitled " The power and knowledge.
Baron's Yule Feast,” which had been written previous
to the Purgatory. O i not by changeling, tyrant, tool, or knave,
An unfortunate turn in the affairs of his publisher Thy march, blest liberty ! can now be stayed !
stopped the issue of other works for which he had The wand of Guttemburg-behold it ware !
agreed. In the following summer Mr. Cooper was elle The spell is burst! the dark enchantments fade
gaged on Douglas Jerrold's paper, and made a tour of Of wrinkled ignorance! 'Twas she betrayed
the manufacturing districts and the North of England, Thy first born children, and so oft threw down
to collect materials for a series of articles, which apThe mounds of Freedom. Lo! the Book its aid,
peared in that newspaper under the title of “The ConHath brought! the feudal serf—though still a clown, dition of the People of England." Doth read;—and where his sires gare homage, pays,--a frown.
In November 1846, he returned to London, and comThe sinewy artizan,—the weaver lean,
menced lecturing at the National Hall, where he deliThe shrunken stockinger,—the miner swarth, -
vered the “ Two Orations against taking away Human Read, think, and feel; and in their eyes the sheen
Lite under any circumstances." They contain his Of burning thought betokens thy young birth
avowal of having entirely given up physical force docWithin their souls, blythe Liberty! That earth
trines, and his most explicit maintainance of the sacredWould thus be kindled from the humble spark,
ness of human life. He has continued to lecture at the Ye caught from him of Mentz, and scattered forth,
National Hall on almost every subject of history, sciFaust,--Koster,--Caxton !--not “the clerk,"
ence, morals, and government, to thronged audiences, Himself could prophecy in your own mid-age dark !
up to within a very few weeks of this date. He has al
so delivered discourses on the lives and characters of And yet, O liberty! these humble toilers,
Men of Genius, History, Poetry, etc., at various LiteThe true foundation for thy reign begun.
rary Institutions, in particular at the Parent Mechanics' Aye, and while throne-craft decks man's murderous spoilers, Institute, Southampton-buildings, at the City of LonWhile fererous power mocks the weary sun, With steed throned efigies of Wellington,
don and City of Westminster Institutions, the St. John And columuued piles to Nelson,-Labour's child
Street Institution, etc. He has also repeatedly sup. Turns from their haughty forms to muse upon
plied the place of the eloquent W. J. Fox, at his chapel The page by their blood-chronicie defiled ;
at South-place, Finsbury, on Sunday mornings during Then, bending o'er his toil, weighs well the record wild.
his illness or absence; and has contributed various pa
pers to this Journal, " Jerrold's Magazine,” and other Are, they are thinking,--at the frame and loom,
periodicals. Lately he has, moreover, published two It bench, and forge, and in the lowelled mine;
songs, the music to which he composed in Stafford Jail; And when the scanty hour of rest is come,
that to the “Minstrel's Song” being a minor, and reckAgain they read,- to think and to divine,
oned by musical judges to display real musical taste.
It will be seen that Thomas Cooper is still a hard children have won. Let Englishmen demand the right worker--the especial fate of the author in London. The to live by work at home, and then when each nation has labour he performs would be a large amount for a man rightly organized its own industry, nationality may of strong habit and robust health, but in Thomas Co cease, and the world become one wide workshop, free in per's case, this labour is performed with a constant common to all. The justice of this position every enstruggle with ill health, debility, and neuralgia, the fruit lightened English workman must admit. Let no ear of jail confinement. The difficulty with which he pur- then be open to the temptations of that foul war-spirit, sues his lecturing from this canse would perhaps, how- which some, for their own interest, would endeavour on ever, never be suspected by those who listen to the fervent the ground of this decree to instil into the minds of the addresses which often, for two hours together, he pours labouring classes of England. The true interest of both out.
peoples is one--the national employment in their own But it is the fate of almost every man of the present country of the members of each nation. The working day who devotes himself to the pursuits of literature, classes of both France and England have not only the and the advancement of political freedom to have to per- same interests, but are also embued with the same poliform nearly as much toil as a steam-engine. Thomas tical and social views. In vain then, will the war-cry Cooper, like too many of us, has to labour for his bread be raised. I am as safe here as in London. The Revowhile ho labours also for the public cause, and we regret lution is not finished, but perfect order reigns in Paris, that he has to suffer the Purgatory of Martyrs, in the although citizens without uniform guard us; and this legacy of prison pains, as well as the daily arduous order will continue, even through further changes. Let strife of existence, when he would otherwise be able to not the press of England be believed when it says the devote himself to healthful reflection, and work out his contrary. Its falsehoods have already been infamous. long projected twin-epic of “The Purgatory of Suicides,” It has far from truly read the Placards of Paris. The Paradise of Martyrs, a noble and glorions subject. These placards surround the proclamations of the Go
We may conclude ihis notice by stating, that Thomas vernment, with a rainbow of all colours. On that wall Cooper has no children, but a most amiable and intelli- yet blackened with the discharge of the murderous mus. gent wife, who, however, suffers from constant ill health. ketry of a dead and drivelling despotism, now shine the He is careful always to proclaim his adherence “ to his placards of each arrondissement calling their several inown order”—the Working Class, and we believe the habitants to prepare for the election of the National warmest wish of his heart, is that for which he is con- Guards. Here a colonel offers himself for re-election on stantly labouring, to see them achieve what he conceives the ground of his past patriotism, in a green affiche. to be their RIGHTS.
There a captain calls for support to his candidature through a pink paper. Fortunate the people, who
choose their inilitary, for soldiers must then become the LETTERS FROM PARIS.
organs of order, and not the delegates of despotism !
Financial affairs have produced a host of projects in
paper, which would suit the Birmingham brotherhood. (For Howitt's Journal.)
One convenient citizen produces a plan by which he
would make France rich in eight days. The project for No. III.
a property tax by its side is, however, nearer the purTHE PLACARDS OF PARIS.
pose. Assuredly, though we have had change and
plenty, a certain change is not now always to be obDEAR FRIENDS,
tained, except for gold, which one can ever easily get Paris is quite papered with placards. rid of. The people of Paris, however, are not paralyzed Its walls are inspired with mind, not only with the sa- hy the difficulty. Bravely has it brought out that sacred cred words, LIBERTÉ, EOALITÉ, FRATERNITÍ, which sacrifice of theirs which is not bounded by the barriare gioriously prominent on every public edifice, not cades, but is as universal as the heart. They come foronly in those mementos to tyrants which must have an ward--that canaille, as Louis Philippe's silly son denoeternal existence, but also with those signs of daily minated them, in his anxiety for cannon--they come life, with those pulses of intellectual movement which forward, God's hands as they really are-those working we count by the minute, and which assuredly show that men of Paris, with their shoemakers' sous, with their the grand heart of Paris beats quick, and that its throbs plaisterers' pennies, with the centimes of their carpenare magnificently momentous. Well will it be for the ters, and with the francs of their free-masons, with the Belshazzars of ihe earthi, if they will read its hand- wages of their days works, and offer them as a holy ofwriting on the walls. Well would it be for all to mark fering, as true tithe, to the Provisional Government, the as one can in Paris, how the overthrow of a lethargic political priesthood of the nation. The other classes, monarchy quickens, and warmly vivifies the intellectual too, are following their example. With such faith as life of a people.
this, what fear for commercial credit! When the heart First of all, for the sake of distinction, printed upon coins money the mint can never fail. white paper, we see the proclamations of the Provisional The clubs, however, are the great placarders of Paris. Governinent, with its splendid array of nanes of Euro- Everywhere, where a placard could by possibility appean reputation, upon the walls of Paris. These with pear, they have papered the plaister with their prints. their beneficent ordinances have already been made some proclaim their principles. Others call upon the known by the British journals. Two recent ones I will, citizens to accord them their support, and others again however, notice. The first is one which decrees the make known the hours and the places of their meetings. gratuitous. opening of one of the theatres, under the The clubs thus convened in Paris are most numerousname of the Théatre de la République, to the poorest ci- they are ubiquitous. Every arrondissement has one. tizens. · It is well to be known that this theatre is in- There is the club of the National Guard. There is the tended principally to produce the popular anthems. The club of the Independants; not like those, however, who second is the decree that the English workmen should fought with Cromwell, for our Commonwealth, as not leave France. Let not the working classes of England only seekers but soldiers of the Lord—but political inthink this harsh. France is engaged in the organization dependants, preaching no party, but wishing to weigh of her national industry on a national basis, as an ex- all things. There is the club of the Marais, meeting, I ample to other nations. She has assuredly enough to believe, in the house where Marat dwelt. The Girondist do to serve her own sons, without being burthened with Club is not resuscitated, withont Lamartine and his those who have no right to claim that which her friends represent it. That, however, cannot be the case.